Every pair of ballet shoes are different. The different pointe shoe brands will use various shades of pinks and beige. But they won’t always match your skin tone.

When it comes to doing onstage performances, your teachers may ask you to “pancake” your pointe shoes to get them a shade closer to your skin tone.

How to Pancake Pointe Shoes

Here’s a short video guide that will teach you how to pancake your ballet shoes, and we’ll include step-by-step instructions below.

Materials You’ll Need:

  • Pink calamine lotion (for matching to pink tights) or liquid foundation that matches your skin tone.
  • A wedge shaped makeup sponge to paint your pointe shoes
  • Bowl or a plate for pouring the calamine lotion or foundation into
  • Paper towels for dabbing the makeup sponge

Preparing Your Pointe Shoes for Pancaking

  • Start by folding a paper towel so it’s able to absorb calamine lotion or the foundation without any seeping through.
  • Shake the lotion or foundation well
  • Pour some of the lotion or foundation for about three seconds into your bowl.
  • Note: The more you use the longer it will take your pointe shoes to dry.
  • Depending on how well worn your pointe shoes are, consider tidying up any frayed satin

Steps to Pancaking Pointe Shoes (Tutorial)

  1. Start by dipping your sponge in the calamine lotion or foundation.
  2. Tap the makeup sponge on the paper towel to make sure you don’t have any excess lotion or foundation. Note: Excess lotion or foundation will leave splotchy streaks on pointe shoes when applied. Remember, less is more.
  3. Next, hold your pointe shoe from the inside, and use long strokes to paint the pointe shoe. Do this in movements from the top of the box onwards.
  4. Paint around the pointe shoe and use the edges of the sponge to get into the creases in the satin.
  5. Don’t forget to get the ribbons! Lay them flat and paint them in long sweeping motions.
  6. Hang the pointe shoes by the heels to dry. Make sure they get a minimum of hour of drying time before wearing them.
  7. Don’t be afraid to touch up the pointe shoes with calamine lotion or foundation. The more use they get onstage, the more likely some is to rub off or need some touchups.

When it comes to pointe shoes, you’re going to need a ton of accessories to get them ready. Check out the BalletBox Pointe Shoe Kit for an amazing package of all of the ribbon, elastic, and stitching accessories you’ll need for your pointe shoes.

Leave a Comment!